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Fields of Revolution: Agrarian Reform and Rural State Formation in Bolivia (1935-1964)

November 6, 2023 @ 4:15 pm - 6:00 pm

By Carmen Soliz (University of North Carolina at Charlotte)

Webinar via Zoom, jointly hosted with UCL Institute of the Americas

6 November, 4:15 – 6:00 pm UK time

Webinar recording available here: https://youtu.be/x1CV8iCTneE

Fields of Revolution examines the second largest case of peasant land redistribution in Latin America and agrarian reform — arguably the most important policy to arise out of Bolivia’s 1952 revolution. Competing understandings of agrarian reform shaped ideas of property, productivity, welfare, and justice. Peasants embraced the nationalist slogan of “land for those who work it” and rehabilitated national union structures. Indigenous communities proclaimed instead “land to its original owners” and sought to link the ruling party discourse on nationalism with their own long-standing demands for restitution. Landowners, for their part, embraced the principle of “land for those who improve it” to protect at least portions of their former properties from expropriation. Carmen Soliz combines analysis of governmental policies and national discourse with everyday local actors’ struggles and interactions with the state to draw out the deep connections between land and people as a material reality and as the object of political contention in the period surrounding the revolution.

About the presenter

Carmen Soliz is a Latin American History associate professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She is the author of Fields of Revolution: Agrarian Reform and Rural State Formation in Bolivia, 1935-1964. Her research focuses on peasant politics, agrarian reform, rural state formation, nation-building, and social movements in Latin America.

This seminar is part of the Autumn 2023 Agrarian Change Seminar Series and is co-organised by the Journal of Agrarian Change and UCL Institute of the Americas.


November 6, 2023
4:15 pm - 6:00 pm




Journal of Agrarian Change
UCL Institute of the Americas